The City of Spring Hill Board of Mayor and Aldermen commenced their public hearing this week by honoring well known public servant, Paul Downing, for his prolific service to the community.
BOMA voted unanimously to honor Downing with a certificate and a commemorative plaque, permanently mounted in Fischer Park.
Downing served as member and even vice chair of the Parks and Recreation Committee, and he also chaired the Spring Hill Municipal Planning Commission. Perhaps of even greater significance to some citizens, though, Downing has founded and led myriad recreational youth sport leagues, which have seen considerable turnout from kids citywide. Downing’s tenure on the Planning and Parks Committees spanned 2015 to 2021.
Last year, the city saw the launch of Spring Hill Sports Association, and Downey has steered it to serve over 2,350 youth in cheerleading, flag football, lacrosse, tackle football and soccer. Tackle football accounts for 350 participants and has been in operation since 2014 whereas The Coyotes — an early milestone in his legacy — serves 150 kids and has been in operation since 2010.
“I have personally seen the sacrifice [Downing’s] family has made, all the work he has done to volunteer, […] but the youth, the coaches, the parents in this community who have benefitted from him bringing the sports to Spring Hill is something that just absolutely he should be honored for,” Alderman Nieves said.
Citizens initially brought the idea of having the city formally recognize Downing to Alderman Brent Murray, who then submitted a proposal that BOMA ultimately ratified as a resolution. Downing first shopped the idea with the Planning and Parks departments, who unanimously agreed that Downing was more than deserving of the honor.
Downing “is in fact a citizen who’s lived in Spring Hill for many, many years and has contributed to incredible successes that this city has enjoyed, especially with the youth,” Mayor Jim Hagaman said.
Downing has operated as director of service operations at Teneo for the last five years. Before that, he was an information technology infrastructure manager at Pinnacle Financial Partners for over a year.